Friday, 20 June 2014

Independent Schools, Elite Sport and University Entrance

Letter to the Daily Telegraph
Published Saturday 21st June 2014

Sir Michael Wilshaw, the head of Ofsted, argues that a disproportionate number of independent school pupils represent Britain at elite sport. So what do we do? Do we have quotas of state pupils who represent GB at the Olympics or England at Rugby? No of course we don't. We aspire to bring sport in the maintained sector up to standard of sport in independent schools.
Independent schools also provide a disproportionate number of pupils to Oxford and Cambridge and Russell Group universities, so why is Offa seeking to impose a system of quotas? Why not try to raise academic standards amongst the most able in state schools?
Both TeamGB and UKplc need the best proven talent to compete on a global stage and quotas aren't going to help - a broader talent base will.

Mark S Steed
Principal, Berkhamsted School
Berkhamsted, Herts

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